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John Sacher

Chairman, Westminster Forum

John is a former Director of Marks & Spencer. Among his other commitments he is Vice President of the Industry and Parliament Trust, a Fellow of the Royal College of Music and President of the Royal Philatelic Society London. He has an Honorary Doctorate from the Hebrew University of Jerusalem and is President of its UK Friends.

Karl Snowden

Chief Executive, Westminster Forum

Through his consultancy company firstfloor ltd Karl provides tailored strategic and public policy advice to a range of organisations and individuals.

Raised in the Kingdom of Fife he is a graduate in Scots Law from the University of Edinburgh and a member of the Institute of Chartered Accountants of Scotland.

In his early career he led audit and management consultancy teams in PwC and Xerox Corporation across Europe, Australasia, Africa and the Far East. Back in the UK he joined Allied Dunbar as Chief Computer Auditor before going on to a number of other senior management roles.

He created, and led for a number of years, the first public affairs functions both in Zurich Financial Services (Director of Government and Industry Affairs) and HBOS (Group Head of Public Policy) before setting up his own consultancy in 2009.

Karl is a trustee of the David Hume Institute, a Director of the Westminster Forum and a member of the Advisory Board of Policy Action Ltd (Brussels). He has recently stepped down as Chairman of The Financial Advice Academy and has previously served as Chairman of the Life Insurance Association; founder Director of the Personal Finance Society and member of the General Council of Institute of Chartered Accountants of Scotland.

He has chaired and served on many and various financial services Industry Committees for the Association of British Insurers, British Bankers Association and European Banking Federation among other organisations.

Adam Bruce

Global Head of Corporate Affairs, Mainstream Renewable Power

Adam Bruce is Global Head of Corporate Affairs at Mainstream Renewable Power. Mainstream’s core business is to develop, build and operate wind energy, solar thermal and ocean current plants by partnering with governments, utility companies, developers and investors across Europe, North and South America and Australia.

Prior to joining Mainstream Adam was UK Chief Executive of Airtricity, and then following that company’s acquisition by SSE, was Head of Sustainable Development at SSE.

Adam trained as a solicitor, and was Director of Public Policy at McGrigors, the UK law firm. He is a Fellow of the RSA and Chairman of the British Wind Energy Association.

Sir Michael Craig-Cooper, CBE TD DL

Director, National Bank of Kuwait (International) Plc and other companies

Previously, Advisor to Allen and Overy, International Nickel Company of Canada Ltd, Carre Orban and Partners, and Chairman, Disciplinary Appeal Committee of Chartered Institute of Management Accountants.
Member, Court of the Drapers Company (Master 1997/98), and active with many other pro bono bodies including The Royal Hospital Chelsea (Chelsea Pensioners).
Co-author with Lord Sheppard and Bain & Co partners of books on management including ‘Management Audit – the management of change’ and with Lord Lane of Horsell and Professor N. Graham Maw ‘On Corporate Governance’.
Vice Lord-Lieutenant of Greater London.

Giles Deards

Strategic Communications Adviser

Giles has recently set up Mapesbury Communications, and  previously has 15 years experience of advising companies in the financial services, telecoms, entertainment, retail and FMCG sectors on corporate reputation, including public affairs, media relations and internal communications.  He most recently worked as Director of European Communications at GSK Consumer Healthcare having been Director of Global Corporate Affairs at IHG, Director of Corporate Communications (UK & Developing Countries) at The Walt Disney Company and both Head of Media Relations and Head of UK Public Affairs at BT.  He was Government Relations Manager for Alliance & Leicester plc from 1997-2001.  He has an MA in Asia-Pacific Studies from Essex University.

Rory Scanlan

Director, Fishburn

Rory has worked in public affairs, politics and communications for over 15 years and joined Fisburn as a Director in 2007.  He started his career in the US Congress and went on to work as a parliamentary researcher and political adviser.  Rory has worked in a variety of consultancy roles advising companies across a wide range of sectors on communications and public affairs.

Christine Thompson

Policy Manager, SABMiller plc

Christine began her career at SABMiller, one of world’s largest breweries, in January 2005 with responsibility for managing the company’s relationships with the UK government, NGOs, the international development community, academic institutions and international business organisations during 2005 when the G8 summit focused on Africa.  In her current position,  she manages SABMiller’s public affairs programme in the UK and has overall responsibility for the company’s communication around responsible alcohol consumption and health-related issues.
During her time with SABMiller, Christine has represented the company on senior public platforms linked to corporate social responsibility and business’s role in poverty alleviation all over the globe – in Afrida, the EU, India, Latin America and the US.
She has a background in public affairs, corporate communications and stakeholder management gained in South Africa and the UK.  She has a Masters Degree in International Relations from  Rhodes University, South Africa.  Her experience includes a secondment to the Independent Electoral Commission in Johannesburg during South Africa’s historic 1994 elections, three years as Press and Information Advisor to the Head of the European Commission’s Delegation in Pretoria, and nine years as a public affairs consultant based in Johannesburg and London, advising clients requiring specialist knowledge and advice on African issues.
Born in Zimbabwe, Christined has been based in  London since 2000 and became a British citizen in 2006.  Her personal interests include tennis and photography.

Sam Walker

Head of Public Affairs, Aberdeen Asset Management plc

Sam joined Aberdeen in 2002. Previously, Sam was an Account Director in the financial services practice at GJW Government Relations, specialising in competition and regulation.  Prior to that, Sam worked at Westminster from 1992 to 1999 on a range of portfolios at ministerial, select committee and constituency level.   As well as a Director of Westminster Forum, Sam is a Member of the Scottish Executive’s Financial Services Implementation Group (FiSIG).  Sam graduated with a BA (Hons) in history from King’s College, London.

Miles Webber

Director of Corporate Affairs GE UK

Miles was educated at Clifton College in Bristol and at Manchester and London Universities. He joined the asset management division of Merrill Lynch in 1999, and in January 2001 was appointed Director of Public Affairs for Merrill Lynch in the Europe, Middle East and Africa Region, having spent the previous decade in the public affairs arena. In 2005 Miles joined GE as Head of Government Relations. Miles is a Fellow of the Royal Society of Arts, an alumni of the Windsor Leadership Trust, and a founding Director of the Foreign Policy Centre think-tank.

The Forum

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